Frances Tiafoe has the potential to be the face of US men’s tennis
After the retirements of Pete Sampras and Andre Agassi and later Andy Roddick, a sameness has settled in at the upper strata of American men’s tennis but Frances Tiafoe has the potential to shake that up.
Grand Slam success has eluded a succession of servebots trotted out by American tennis.
The American game is peculiar because of the prominent place collegiate sport holds in the United States, but that doesn’t completely account for the drop-off in success in Majors.
US Tennis has produced plenty of good players in the 21st century, however, none have really had the personality or appeal of their legends John McEnroe or Agassi.
Tiafoe is somebody who is already a shining example of the new American dream as the son of immigrants feeling civil war in Sierra Leone, he has worked tirelessly to become an established tour professional.
His game is a study in finding what works for you, with his forehand grip the best example of this.
Tiafoe has admitted that he just can’t hit on the forehand with a conventional grip.
A technical deficiency like that might stand in the way of a player with less determination.
Praised for his work ethic at just 8 years old, Tiafoe stands out from the class when it comes to the next generation of US men on the ATP Tour not that the likes of Jenson Brooksby or Taylor Fritz don’t demand attention, but tennis has always loved its standouts.
On tour, Tiafoe has proved to be a tireless worker who has been involved in some highly entertaining matches.
Just this year he enjoyed victory in a barn burner against Alexander Bublik at Wimbledon and his hard work has seen him improve on all surfaces but especially clay, as he reached the championship match in Estoril.
At 24-years-old Tiafoe’s best years are still ahead of him and if he keeps up his efforts there is no reason he can’t become a superstar.
Tiafoe could attract the same kind of interest as somebody like Naomi Osaka. Both are players who have multinational links and broad appeal.
If Tiafoe can get it right to reach the very top of the game, it would be a story of hard work paying off and one that presents a positive image of what it takes to be an ATp Tour professional.
Gael Monfils’ injury woes continue as he withdraws from US Open
Gael Monfils ruled out of another Grand Slam.
Emma Raducanu urged to stick with Dmitry Tursunov by former British No 1: ‘Her tactics were good’
Emma Raducanu and Dmitry Tursunov off to a good start in Cincy.
Simona Halep hits $40m mark in WTA career-prize money earnings, only behind Serena and Venus Williams
A look at where Simona Halep sits on some of the all-time WTA lists.
Exclusive – John Lloyd opens up on his broken marriage to Chris Evert
John Lloyd believes his marriage to Chris Evert was doomed to fail as the pair were simply too young and had the eyes of the world on them.
Andy Murray vs Cameron Norrie, Rafael Nadal vs Borna Coric: Start times, TV and streaming info
What time will Andy Murray take on Cam Norrie? What about Rafael Nadal and Nick Kyrgios’ matches?
Emma Raducanu vs Victoria Azarenka: What time are the big matches in Cincy
All you need to know ahead of the Emma Raducanu-Victoria Azarenka, Iga Swiatek-Sloane Stephens matches.
Daniil Medvedev overcomes ‘tricky’ opener while ‘relaxed’ Carlos Alcaraz ‘grows with the pressure’
Solid wins for Daniil Medvedev and Carlos Alcaraz.
WATCH: ‘Worn out’ Nick Kyrgios and Alejandro Davidovich Fokina conjure up epic rally
Nick Kyrgios and Alejandro Davidovich Fokina produce some magic in Cincy.
‘Calm’ Emma Raducanu sees off Serena Williams: ‘It was a true honour to share the court with her’
Emma Raducanu just too good for “legend” Serena Williams in Cincinnati.
Naomi Osaka’s nightmare run continues: How big a setback is the Cincy defeat ahead of the US Open?
Naomi Osaka’s latest defeat a big blow ahead of the US Open.